We trace the he­roes of Black­pool’s 1970-71 An­glo Ital­ian Cup suc­cess

The Football League Paper - - NEWS - By Neil Fissler

MICKEY BURNS’ ex­tra-time win­ner against Bologna in the An­glo-Ital­ian Cup Fi­nal pro­vided Black­pool with their big­gest suc­cess since the Matthews Cup Fi­nal in 1953.

But it was most un­ex­pected as Black­pool, with only six wins in all com­pe­ti­tions all sea­son, fin­ished bot­tom of the First Di­vi­sion.

The club, who had brought in Bob Stokoe as manager in De­cem­ber 1970, had al­ready com­mit­ted them­selves to play in the com­pe­ti­tion long be­fore the sea­son ended.

The An­glo-Ital­ian Cup was tagged on to the end of the cam­paign and Black­pool faced two home games against Verona, which ended 3-3, and Roma, who ran out 3-1 win­ners.

Burns scored in both games but the Seasiders trav­elled to Italy with lit­tle ex­pected. Stokoe in­tro­duced young­sters like Tommy Hutchi­son, Den­nis Wann,Tony Green and Alan Ain­scow into the squad.

It worked. Hutchi­son and Wann both scored in the 4-1 win in Verona and Hutchi­son fol­lowed it up with an­other in the 2-1 victory against Roma.

Burns said:“Bob Stokoe came in quite late in the sea­son and he was a good mo­ti­va­tor. That helped and he also brought in one or two younger play­ers.

“It was prob­a­bly one of the flukes of the sea­son. I don’t think the club ex­pected to win it, es­pe­cially if you looked at the teams in our group.”


Black­pool fin­ished top of the English sec­tion with 15 points: two for each win, an­other for a draw – but also one point for each of the ten goals they scored!

It gave them one more point than Swin­don and they faced Bologna in the fi­nal. They won an Ital­ian sec­tion which in­cluded In­ter Mi­lan and Sam­p­do­ria as well as Roma.

Bruno Pace gave the home side a first-half lead in front of 26,000 fans be­fore John Craven lev­elled things up af­ter 62 min­utes to force extratime.

In the 99th minute, Burns picked up a Wann pass 25 yards out and slammed home a shot which gave Bologna keeper Giuseppe Vavas­sori no chance.

“I will al­ways re­mem­ber the fi­nal be­cause it was a boil­ing hot day and they played it in the af­ter­noon for some rea­son,” re­called Burns.

“We went 1-0 down in the first half, then John Craven scored and the game went to ex­tra-time. We had one or two play­ers who were al­most crawl­ing off the pitch with cramp! Luck­ily, I scored the win­ner from 25 yards.”

1. Dave Hat­ton: Ended his ca­reer as player-manager of Bury. Re­turned to Black­pool to be­come an es­tate agent be­fore get­ting in­volved in com­mer­cial in­sur­ance. 2. Harry Mow­bray: Af­ter work­ing for the Aus­tralian gov­ern­ment, he re­turned to Scot­land to live in Dun­fermline, where he worked for a hos­pi­tal­ity and cater­ing com­pany. 3. Harry Thom­son: Set­tled in Barrow for 42 years work­ing as a grounds­man for the lo­cal coun­cil. He died of throat can­cer in March 2013, aged 72. 4. Glyn James: Re­mained in the Black­pool area run­ning a post of­fice and then laun­dry and dry clean­ing busi­ness. Cus­tomers in­cluded his for­mer em­ploy­ers. 5. Bill Bent­ley: He re­turned to his na­tive Stoke-on-Trent and be­came a win­dow cleaner in Tren­tham. He is now re­tired, living in North Stafford­shire. 6. Peter Ni­chol­son: Coached at Bolton’s academy and worked for the club in a com­mer­cial ca­pac­ity. Moved on to coach at Black­burn and is at Bolton work­ing in cor­po­rate hos­pi­tal­ity. 7. John Craven: Coached in the United States and died of a heart attack on a visit to Canada in De­cem­ber 1996, aged 49. 8. Adam Black­law: Set­tled in Burn­ley run­ning a newsagents, then the Cross Keys pub and worked as a care­taker at Colne and Nel­son Col­lege. He died in Fe­bru­ary 2010, aged 72. 9. Terry Al­cock: Stayed in the Black­pool area, be­com­ing li­censee of the Black­pool Sup­port­ers’ Club be­fore run­ning sev­eral other pubs in the lo­cal area. 10. Mickey Burns: Joined the coach­ing staff at Mid­dles­brough be­fore go­ing to work for the Pro­fes­sional Foot­ballers’ As­so­ci­a­tion as ed­u­ca­tion of­fi­cer prior to re­tir­ing in 2004. 11. Tommy Hutchi­son: Fa­mously scored at both ends in the 1981 FA Cup Fi­nal. He lived in South Wales while spend­ing nearly 20 years as Bris­tol City’s com­mu­nity of­fi­cer but has now re­turned to live in his na­tive Scot­land. 12. Jimmy Arm­field: Af­ter man­ag­ing Bolton Wan­der­ers and Leeds United, he be­came a jour­nal­ist with the Daily Ex­press and is still a match sum­mariser for BBC 5 Live. 13. Tony Cole­man: He set­tled in Australia where he drove a truck for the state rail­way and has worked as a bar man in Thai­land. 14. Tony Green: Af­ter his ca­reer ended, Tony be­came a maths teacher at Hodg­son High School, Poul­ton-le-Fylde and then Mill­field High School near his home in Thorn­ton, Lan­cashire. 15. John Hughes: Lives in Llangefni, An­gle­sey, and ran a fam­ily car sales busi­ness, R& M J Hughes & Son. NOT PIC­TURED Alan Ain­scow: Af­ter work­ing in a sport cen­tre, he man­aged a newsagents and worked for the post of­fice be­com­ing a de­liv­ery driver in Orm­skirk. Ron­nie Brown: Set­tled in the Brad­ford area where he fin­ished his ca­reer and has worked as a porter at Brad­ford Royal In­fir­mary for many years. John Bur­ridge: Af­ter play­ing for 29 clubs, he be­came a goal­keep­ing coach in the Mid­dle East and is now a tele­vi­sion pun­dit. Fred Kemp: Now lives in Wolver­hamp­ton and worked in the fam­ily busi­ness sell­ing of­fice fur­ni­ture. John Mur­ray: For­mer youth devel­op­ment of­fi­cer at New­cas­tle United be­fore be­com­ing staff coach and skills trainer for Texas Light­ning, Dal­las. Fred Pick­er­ing: Lives in Mill Hill, Black­burn, and worked as a fork­lift truck driver. Neil Rams­bot­tom: Af­ter go­ing into the fi­nan­cial ser­vices in­dus­try, he be­came a qual­ity con­troller for an in­sur­ance com­pany. Alan Sud­dick: He lived in Black­pool near Bloom­field Road and was in­volved in a dec­o­rat­ing busi­ness un­til his death in March 2009 af­ter a battle against can­cer, aged 64. Alan Tay­lor: He con­tin­ued to live in the lo­cal area and worked as an au­di­tor in the li­censed trade un­til his re­tire­ment. Den­nis Wann: Af­ter re­tir­ing, he owned a cou­ple of newsagents in the Lytham St Annes area.

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